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Sunday, December 04, 2022

Catching the Torch: Analyzing the Habs’ Latest Additions to the North American Prospect Pool

welcome back to catching the torchwhere we look at the Montreal Canadiens’ North American prospects and how their development progresses from week to week.

The second day of the 2022 NHL Draft has produced a host of new additions to Habs’ North American talent pool, including a ton of high-risk, high-reward trades, as well as probably the safest pick in the entire draft. .

We’ll look at each of the seven additions to the pool and rate each one based on pick value quality, and then break down their areas of strength and the buffs that would most bolster their overall game.

No. 33 – Owen Beck, C, Mississauga (OHL)

Value to choose: B+

I love Owen Beck. He is the textbook definition of a safe pick, a sure-fire NHLer with so many facets to his game that at least one of them is bound to translate. His defensive game is among the best in the 2022 NHL Draft. The way he occupies space on the defensive end, reads opposing plays two or three steps in advance, and uses his cane to interrupt and intercept makes him a a prospect who, at a minimum, will land a role in the bottom six of any NHL. line up.

However, he still offers some promise as a prospect with relentless drive who excels in transition. There were higher-potential prospects available and picked soon after, like scoring winger Jagger Firkus and right-handed defenseman Mattias Hävelid, but Beck offers a nice balance to the crop as a touch in a sea of ​​home run changes.

His offensive tools lack high-end pop, but it’s easier to build up from a solid base, and Beck has that.

No. 62—Hutson Lane, RHP, USNTDP (USHL)

Value by choice: A

From the first time I saw Lane Hutson, I have been a huge fan of his game. Although his slim build at 5’8”, 159 pounds may be a problem, he certainly has the best brains of any defenseman in this draft. He can take control of any given turn and display his silky hands, elite understanding of systems and exploitation of open ice to make hit play after hit under pressure. The following sequence will more or less explain everything.

Interestingly, he also brought an endocrine evaluation to the Combine to show the scouts that he still has about two inches of bone growth left. His main setback at the moment is how easy it is to avoid rushing. Any wing with enough wingspan and strength to push him wide ends up with an open lane to the net.

If Hutson works with Adam Nicholas to match defensive footwork and funnel opponents to the boards, the Habs could have a top-tier offensive defense here. I contend that if Hutson had been 6’0” or taller, he would have been a safe choice in the top 10.

#75 – Vinzenz Rohrer, RW, Ottawa (OHL)

Value to choose: B

Vinzenz Rohrer’s physical dominance as a 5’11”, 168-pound forward is something rarely seen in the OHL. He uses tremendous body positioning and stick work to catch much larger defenders by surprise and flip pucks all over the ice. Although the Austrian striker does show some flashes of playmaking, he is not a constant fixture of his game and tends to end up a lot on the fringes or struggling for position at the front of the net as a result of his high-intensity control play.

Play with speed, intensity and a mean streak. However, as he is, his offensive potential is relatively limited. If the Habs can add some midrange scoring and inside-driven plays to Rohrer’s game, the combination of that with his bulldog style of play would be quite a handful at the NHL level.

When. 127 — Cedrick Guindon, C/LW, Owen Sound (OHL) .

Value by choice: A

Cedrick Guindon’s offensive input is truly a double threat, as the prospect’s 30 goals and 29 assists in 68 games clearly demonstrate. However, an elite brain and the ability to pick up the pace are what make Guindon’s game work.

He drops back, plays his passes quickly and accurately to the best option, and even the way he masks his shot while holding on to it shows the intelligence needed to beat defenders and goalkeepers regularly. Off the puck, he supports his defenders, circulates low and picks up speed to ensure every play is quick and easy. There are many small things that he does very well.

Another little detail Guindon regularly shows off is his ability to hit spaces at the right time to clean up loose pucks. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Guindon make it to the NHL in a middle-six role four or five years from now.

No. 130: Jared Davidson, C, Seattle (WHL)

Value to choose: C+

I caught Jared Davidson on a couple of visits to other Seattle Thunderbirds prospects like Kevin Korchinski and Reid Schaefer and wasn’t too impressed with his overall projectability. The older center has a strong shooter and led his team by a wide 23-point margin, but he’s not much of an inside lane driver and tends to shoot from pretty much anywhere. I’ll be watching him more closely over the course of the next season and see if I start to enjoy playing him more with a larger sample.

#162 – Emmett Croteau, G, Waterloo (USHL)

Value to choose: TBD

If I’m honest, I don’t have many notes on Emmett Croteau as a prospect: I didn’t spend a lot of time scouting netminders this year and I didn’t watch enough Waterloo games to get a lasting impression of his style of play. Stat-wise, he was one of the top 10 goalkeepers in the USHL and it seems like he always steps up in the playoffs. The 6-foot-4, 194-pound goaltender will be my first set of visits before fall training camp begins.

No. 216 — Miguel Tourigny, RD, Acadie-Bathurst/Blainville-Boisbriand (QMJHL)

Value by choice: A

This is a great pick for Habs in this range. Although Miguël Tourigny is small at 5’8” and 178 pounds, his tremendous skating and footwork make him a solid running defender, and he is one of the most offensively productive blue-liners in the QMJHL right now. The double-age prospect follows Habs’ recent trend of selecting native Quebec re-entries in the final rounds.

Riley Kidney’s teammate also plays with an edge and doesn’t back down from offensive activation opportunities, leading him to finish second in QMJHL defenders with goals (31) and points (80) in 65 games split between Armada and Titan. I just wonder if he really has enough track ahead of him to develop or if he has already approached his full potential. Regardless, it’s a great seventh-round swing for the Habs.


Thank you for reading. follow me on twitter @HadiK_Scouting to learn more about Habs prospects and to keep up with the rest of my scouting work.

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